Medals and militaria market: 2012 auction review



2015-06-26 13:06:31

Medals and militaria market: 2012 auction review

Paul Fraser Collectibles reviews the big auction events across the medals and militaria sector

It was guns associated with some of crime's most notorious names that stood out from the crowd at 2012's medals and militaria sales

2012's leading results

Bonnie Parker .38 Colt Detective Special The .38 Colt Detective Special, found strapped to Bonnie Parker's thigh

Two guns found on the bodies of outlaws Bonnie and Clyde sold for a combined $504,000 in September. The figure represents a 5.95% pa return on the $100,000 collector Robert Davis paid for the two guns in 1986. The first Victoria Cross medal awarded to a private in the first world war sold 53.3% above its pre-sale estimate for 276,000 ($433,653) in July. A second world war-period German Enigma machine beat its estimate by 42.1% at a Bonhams auction in London in November. The three-rotor machine had been expected to achieve up to 60,000 ($95,919)but changed hands for 85,250 ($135,099).

Enigma machine auction Breaking the Enigma code is thought to have shortened the second world war by two years

What is thought to be the last battle flag from the American revolution in private ownership sold for $422,500 at a November auction in Philadelphia. A gun, thought to have belonged to Ned Kelly's brother Dan, auctioned for $126,613 in November. General George Custer's personal Spencer carbine rifle realised $179,250 in December- a 258.5% increase on its $50,000 valuation.

It was a breakout year for

USS Constitution flag A 31-star circa 1851 ensign, flown from the USS Constitution, sold for $158,000

Naval flags from the USS Constitution. A unique collection of rare US naval flags from the historic ship set several world records at a Philadelphia auction in April.

A year to forget for

Joseph Goebbels love letters. While Nazi documents provide a chilling fascination for many, it seems that not all documents are held in high regard. An archive of Joseph Goebbels' early letters, including several love notes, failed to sell at a September auction, when they appeared with a $200,000-300,000 estimate.

One you may have missed

A US naval dispatch declaring the end of the second world war changed hands for $20,500 at an August auction.

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